Alteration of the platelet serotonin
transporter in romantic love

by
Marazziti D, Akiskal HS, Rossi A, Cassano GB
Dipartmento di Psichiatria,
Neurobiologia, Farmacologia e Biotecnologie,
University of Pisa, Italy.
Psychol Med 1999 May; 29(3):741-5


ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The evolutionary consequences of love are so important that there must be some long-established biological process regulating it. Recent findings suggest that the serotonin (5-HT) transporter might be linked to both neuroticism and sexual behaviour as well as to obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). The similarities between an overvalued idea, such as that typical of subjects in the early phase of a love relationship, and obsession, prompted us to explore the possibility that the two conditions might share alterations at the level of the 5-HT transporter. METHODS: Twenty subjects who had recently (within the previous 6 months) fallen in love, 20 unmedicated OCD patients and 20 normal controls, were included in the study. The 5-HT transporter was evaluated with the specific binding of 3H-paroxetine (3H-Par) to platelet membranes. RESULTS: The results showed that the density of 3H-Par binding sites was significantly lower in subjects who had recently fallen in love and in OCD patients than in controls. DISCUSSION: The main finding of the present study is that subjects who were in the early romantic phase of a love relationship were not different from OCD patients in terms of the density of the platelet 5-HT transporter, which proved to be significantly lower than in the normal controls. This would suggest common neurochemical changes involving the 5-HT system, linked to psychological dimensions shared by the two conditions, perhaps at an ideational level.
OCD
SSRIs
Opioids
Oxytocin
Serotonin
Dopamine
SSRIs: review
MTA and MMAI
Why love hurts
The brain in love
Phenylethylamine
New antidepressants
Depressive romantics
The Othello Syndrome
Love, lust and romance
Breeding depressive mice
LSD, mysticism and serotonin
Neuropharmacology of serotonin
Romantic love and elevated NGF levels
Romantic love and the dopaminergic reward pathways


Refs
and further reading

HOME
HedWeb
Nootropics
Cocaine.org
Future Opioids
BLTC Research
MDMA/Ecstasy
Superhapiness?
Utopian Surgery?
The Abolitionist Project
The Hedonistic Imperative
The Reproductive Revolution
Critique of Huxley's Brave New World

The Good Drug Guide
The Good Drug Guide

The Responsible Parent's Guide
To Healthy Mood Boosters For All The Family